The past few weeks we have been having incredibly interesting conversations with banks about their plans to evolve their businesses. We have also seen several news announcements demonstrating the trend we have mentioned before – banks are adopting and integrating Fintech business ideas, and those that have not yet are being encouraged to do so sooner than later.
I recently met with a large US-based bank looking to add new online lending products. Their focus is on improving their omnichannel customer interactions – mobile, web, in branch – to improve their customer relationships and satisfaction. Customers today expect their bank interactions to be simple and smart, and this bank is moving their CRM operations to a FinTech model where they can have a 360 degree view of each customer with a single system of record. This should also help them increase their revenue per customer, as this new information will allow them to make better upsell/cross sell offers. This bank also plans to utilize a more innovative underwriting model. Instead of only depending on FICO scores, they are planning to adopt FinTech best practices and combine both traditional and nontraditional sources to build an underwriting model that can include credit scores, social media information, mobile records, and other public sources of information that will let them approve more eligible loan customers more quickly.
Rabobank recently announced they are starting a trial in which small and medium enterprises (SMEs) can borrow money from high net worth customers of the bank. This offers broader access to financing for businesses while at the same time offering a new investment opportunity for high net worth customers. This form of ‘peer-to-peer lending’ that Rabobank is introducing supplements existing forms of financing they already offer such as regular bank credit and crowdfunding.
Rabobank is building an online platform (Rabo & Co) that brings together businesses and Private Banking customers. Businesses place their financing request on the platform and Private Banking customers state which loan they wish to co-finance. In the trial phase, which ends in December, Rabobank itself will provide at least 50% of every loan. The participants are Private Banking customers with freely investable assets of at least EUR 1 million. The minimum share in the loan to any one business is EUR 100,000. The businesses taking part in the trial are in the growth phase and are seeking financing for expansion or refinancing. Rabobank is the prime contact for the business concerned.
This news came out close to the same time as an article in American Banker, which basically said that even if some of the Fintech companies are hitting bumps in the road, banks should not not “dismiss digital lending as a passing fad.” The article continues to explain that, “Startups after the financial crisis built more efficient processes for approving borrowers, while also delivering better customer experiences. Those breakthroughs will surely endure, even if some of the companies that pioneered them do not.”
We applaud banks for adopting cloud-based solutions that can transform the way they earn revenue and improve interactions with customers. A configurable cloud-based solution gives banks the flexibility to respond to new market opportunities, scalability to grow as business dictates, and multi-layered security to protect customer data all delivering an improved customer experience. Today’s agile marketplace lending strategies, supported by peer-to-peer lending solutions, can launch innovation-focused banks like Rabo into lucrative new markets. This bank has figured out the secret to success: leveraging the latest advances in cloud technology to expand their lending horizons. The cloud makes it easy to acquire cutting edge systems that ensure innovative digital experiences for tech-savvy customers.